Another week, and another series of adventures in cyberland. This week the topic at hand is data breaches: as in some of the most playful ones we’ve seen yet.
So pour that cup of Joe, or prepare for the water cooler while we examine, for your amusement, some of the cyber attacks making headlines this week.
As long as there has been music there have been comedic songs, novelty songs, or other songs with a humorous element. (Think, “Yes! We Have No Bananas” and “White and Nerdy”).
In 2017, things have taken a turn, with a humor for the era. YG & Nipsey Hussle released the song “FDT” (dropping the f-bomb in the title and throughout), and hackers, mostly around the south, have been playing it on repeat since Inauguration Day, sometimes for hours uninterrupted.
One radio station tracked down the source of their attack, an internet-connected antenna that wasn’t properly secured with a password (think of the IoT attacks that have used similar tactics and remember to always change default settings on internet-connected devices).
Other radio stations have likely similar points of weakness for a potential data breach.
Where might you have tuned-in to enjoy this middle finger aimed at establishment? Here’s the list to date of where we have heard of such breaches:
• Indiana: Mother of Redeemer Radio
• Kentucky: Crescent Hill Radio
• South Carolina: WFBS-FM
• Tennessee: El Jefe 96.7
• Texas: KCGF-LP
Most of the stations have since handled the problem, with the Texas station even reportedly having to go off air for several hours to get to the bottom of it.
Hackers hack for various reasons, sometimes out of what appears to be a sense of humor (like the “FDT” replay), sometimes out of what appears to be a Robin-Hood-sort of justice.
The hacker (or team of hackers going by a single nome de plume) Phineas Fisher has done such charitable acts as giving $11,000 in bitcoin to an anti-ISIS group in Syria and training future hackers through an online video tutorial. Such could be viewed as investing in anti-terrorism and education.
This week Phineas made headlines for a different reason: for possibly getting arrested in Spain, or by possibly eluding arrest.
See, the problem is that the stories are inconsistent. The Spanish police say they have arrested three people connected to FinFisher. Later, the Associated Press released screenshots of messages with the hacker, exchanged under promises of anonymity.
We do know that Phineas has been connected to a number of data breaches, and not all of them charitable in nature. So, an arrest of that kind would be quite a coup for Catalonia officials.
Just Playing Games
We can’t discuss games and players (and data breaches) this week without also talking about the hack of 2.5 million Xbox and PlayStation gamers.
If you have an Xbox or PlayStation account and you have not yet changed your password, it’s time to get on that.
The data breach was specifically two popular gaming forums for Xbox 360 and PSP ISOs, potentially exposing the account details of more than two and a half million users. You may have not stored financial data there, but even your user name and password, sold in bulk, have a price on the cyber black market.
What’s more, research shows over and over, that despite warnings against such, people tend to use the same passwords on multiple sites. Maybe you are more careful when it comes to banking or credit card sites, but if you use the same password between multiple sites of any kind, a data breach in one can translate to access to others.
Cover Your Assets
A data breach doesn’t necessarily play out humorously, particularly if you are on the receiving end. It can cost your company big money, in terms of lost reputation, lost time and lost resources involved in a hack.
That’s where professional data breach solutions come in, from a professional task service. Contact us for an assessment.